December at Last: Riding the Polar Express

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The Polar Express, North Conway NH

The Thanksgiving turkey had not yet cooled before my daughter suggested decorating our Christmas tree. She dove  into the ornament box with glee and did a splendid job on old Tannenbaum. Her joyful anticipation of the holiday inspired a poem that I submitted to a local family magazine, baystateparent, as they were requesting ideas about how to make the holidays seem magical.

December at Last

When can we bake cookies? Take a photo for our card?
Can we wrap some presents now and decorate the yard?

Let’s drive slowly through our town and “OOH!” at all the lights.
 And hang an Advent calendar to count down all the nights.

We’ll sing along with favorite songs from holiday CD’s,
Plan a snowball fight, and smell the fresh-cut balsam trees.

With ooey gooey frosting, build a house of gingerbread.
Pull out mittens, hats and scarves and pile onto the sled.

We’ll choose some perfect presents to drop off at Toys for Tots,
And write to Santa, telling him our secret dreams and thoughts.

Me make the season special?  I don’t wish to be contrary.
The kids’ enthusiasm always makes our season merry!

When my poem was selected for publication, the nice folks at Purity Spring Resort offered my family a Polar Express weekend vacation in North Conway, NH.  Even more wonderful, proceeds from the Polar Express benefit the Believe in Books Literacy Foundation which brings the joy of reading to northern New Hampshire and western Maine.

On behalf of all the Mealeys, thank you to baystateparent, Purity Spring, and the Polar Express for our fun weekend. We made Christmas memories that will last a lifetime, and were happy to support a worthy literacy program!


About Cathy Ballou Mealey

Children's book author, repped by Liza Fleissig of the Liza Royce Agency. Wife, mother, daughter, sister, alumna, autism advocate, book reviewer. Reach me via email at or Twitter @catballoumealey
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32 Responses to December at Last: Riding the Polar Express

  1. jama says:

    Wow! So much to love here — congrats on your poem publication and it’s just too cool you got a Polar Express weekend! Love your poem, especially the first five words :).

  2. Laura S. says:

    It’s neat that you were inspired to write this poem and that it resulted in another wonderful memory-making experience riding the Polar Express! Well done!

  3. Catherine Johnson says:

    That is a super poem, congratulations Cathy! And a weekend away, wonderful!

  4. WOW! This is an awesome post! Great poem! Congratulations on winning the contest!

  5. Joanna says:

    Congratulations, and this is such a lovely toasty-warm poem, Cathy! I adore the Polar Express!

  6. This is awesome, Cathy! Your poem is funtastic! Those last lines SAY it all! CONGRADS WOMAN! And what fun to be given the Polar Express weekend. You are feeling very smiley these days, aren’t ya?! 🙂 (((hugs)))

  7. Sue Wang says:

    Wow. This is wonderful. Great poem. I feel like I am there too. (I wish) Congratulations on being selected for the contest…A happy happy holiday season ❤

  8. Susan Brody says:

    Congratulations, Cathy! Happy Holidays to you and yours!

  9. Congratulations Cathy! Such a heartwarming poem. I can see why it was published. What a treat to win the Polar Express weekend! So much fun! Happy holidays!

  10. Congratulations – lovely poem, certainly brightens my spirits! (No tree, and just a few decorations out!) have a wonderful weekend in North Conway – look forward to the post!

  11. Congratulations, Cathy! What a wonderful poem – just delightful! – and how great that you won such a prize and were also able to support literacy. A win-win-win 🙂

  12. Yay! And well-deserved! You are a wonderful poet, Cathy!

  13. Wow, publication AND a fabulous weekend getaway? Can’t think of anyone more deserving, especially after that wonderful poem that brought back so many warm memories for me. Now I’m feeling nostalgic.

    Congrats to a talented and warm-hearted lady (that would be you)! 🙂

  14. Donna says:

    Nice job! Kids do give energy to this season!

  15. tinamcho says:

    Wonderful poem! Congratulations on your publication and win!

  16. Pat Zietlow Miller says:

    Love your poem! Happy holidays after the fact.

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